8

MONDAY

Time travel makes things complicated. Even if you ignore the standard metaphysical conundrums and paradoxes, there’s all sorts of mundane stuff to worry about. What happens if you see your future self? What if, God forbid, your mom falls in love with you? And how do you fit Socrates, Beethoven, and Genghis Khan in one tiny phone booth? In Audrey Niffenegger’s debut novel, The Time Traveler’s Wife, mild-mannered librarian Henry runs up against the practical difficulties of time banditry all too often. That’s because he’s got chrono-displacement disorder, a futuristic malady that makes his genetic clock reset every once in a while. When that reset button gets pressed, Henry turns up naked in a field someplace, sometime—and his lovely bride Clare is left behind. Clare and Henry first met when they were 6 and 36, respectively, then married when they were 23 and 31. But more than a tale of sci-fi pedophilia, The Time Traveler’s Wife is a story about a love unbound by the chafing manacles of time. Niffenegger reads at 7 p.m. at Olsson’s Books & Records, 1307 19th St. NW. Free. (202) 785-1133. (Josh Levin)